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Sage 100 Contractor - Providing Excellent Service

Watch the video below to see how Sage 100 Contractor can help you increase the efficiency of your service department and provide top-notch customer service. 


When competition is stiff, providing efficient top notch customer service will set you apart from your competitors. As you track technicians, work orders, equipment, and parts, it's a challenge to maintain that top service you want when you're relying on an assortment of software systems, spreadsheets, whiteboards, and paperwork. Sage 100 Contractor can make it possible by providing your team of one central integrated solution, tying service dispatch, inventory, equipment management, and accounting altogether.

The Sage 100 Contractor Dispatch Board acts as the service department's nerve center. At a glance, you can see up to five days of work orders. Add, update, or move change orders and easily send service technicians the details they need, so they're solidly prepared for their next appointment.

Sage 100 also makes managing inventory simpler. The software does away with manual tracking of parts used on service calls, automatically updating the quantities on hand. Reordering is also smoother, because Sage 100 Contractor notifies you when stock drops below minimum quantities. You no longer need to carry excessive inventory, saving you money. With service reports like Quantity on Hand Reports for each location, you and your technicians can start the day confident that trucks are fully stocked and technicians have everything they need to deliver the service your customers deserve.

With Sage 100 Contractor, you can increase the efficiency of your service operations. Provide solid customer service and pave the way for the profitability and competitive edge your company needs to prosper well into the future.

Sage Customer Story: Skender Construction

For over 40 years, construction companies have turned to Sage to help manage and grow their businesses. The video below shares the story of one of those construction companies, Skender Construction. If you'd like to learn how Sage can help you grow your construction business, give us a call.

Video Transcript:

Skender Construction is a general contractor. We do about $350,000,000 worth of work. Our main markets are healthcare, retail, and commercial construction. At any one time we have between 35 to 45 projects going on in the Chicagoland area.

The Skender Construction brand is about family. It drew me to the company. I think it draws a lot of people. Our employees are the number one reason we are where we are today. We've actually won an award eight years in a row for being the best place to work.

When we won contractor of the year we really felt like we were sharing it with everybody that we work with, all of our people, all of our sub-contractors, our trade partners, everyone within the family. We really felt like it was a true team award, and not just one company winning the award.

Technology is one of the things we embrace. Having that ability to be mobile is really a necessity more than a luxury. Sage really allows Skender Construction to be a more mobile company than we were in the past. It allows people to have a better work-life balance. Sage allows us to focus on the things that really are important: our employees, our culture, our clients.

In the next ten years I see Skender Construction continually growing up to $500,000,000 plus, but once again, keeping that family atmosphere, that family culture. Skender Construction is always going to be on the forefront of technology, and we're always going to use partners like Sage to make sure that we're not falling behind in the industry.

Sage, where business gets personal.

PlanGrid–Mobile App for Managing Blueprints

plangridAs mobile devices continue to make their way into the construction workplace, new apps are being created to help contractors and save time. One popular mobile app for construction is PlanGrid. Contractors use PlanGrid to upload, store, view, and manage project drawings. Files are stored in the cloud so everyone on the team can have access to the updated versions of the drawings – eliminating time wasted tracking down plan sets and finding the latest set of changes.

In addition to easy access, the app also allows annotate your drawings and share them with your team. You can review drawing revisions, specs, and schedules for your project. You can even add, delete, and modify your punch list items as demonstrated in this video:

The app also lets you take advantage of your mobile device’s camera to take and store photos that document the progress being made on a project.

PlanGrid also uses  256 bit SSL end to end encryption to protect your data as it moves between your device and their servers.

Free training on how to use the app is available on their website. They also offer On-Site training for a fee.

PlanGrid is available for both Apple and Android devices. Pricing for the app is based upon the number of users and “sheets of storage”. The free version of the app includes 50 sheets

Sage Master Builder Version 18 Preview Customer Appreciation Events

Sage Master Builder Version 17Sage Master Builder is getting a new name, but will continue to provide all of your critical business and project information so you can make better decisions and manage your operations more effectively. Please join us for a sneak peek at Sage 100 Contractor at one of our upcoming (and free) customer appreciation events: May  8, 2012 Beaverton, OR May  9, 2012 Seattle, WA May 16, 2012 Anchorage, AK

In addition to a name change, Version 18.1 includes several new enhancements. Join us and learn how to:

  • Use the modern new user interface, which features customizable process maps to help new and experienced users more easily navigate the software and find the information they are looking for.
  • Locate reports using an enhanced search feature to get valuable information in a timely manner. Increase service department efficiency with the new ability to track subcontract scheduling using the dispatch board, more informative dispatch emails, and overbooking warnings.
  • Save money and stay on budget - email direct deposit stubs, pay vendors using ACH electronic payments, and manage invoicing with new budget warnings.

This will be an interactive session, so feel free to bring your Sage Master Builder questions with you.

Click here to register for the location and time that is most convenient for you. We look forward to seeing you there!

Sage Brand Changes

As some of you may have heard, Sage is preparing to roll out a new branding effort that will involve renaming their products. Product names will be dropped in favor of "Sage" and then a number. For example:

  • Sage Master Builder is becoming Sage 100 Contractor
  • Sage Timberline Office is becoming Sage 300 Construction and Real Estate

We will keep our customers and readers updated as changes are rolled out. While there may be a lot of talk about the re-branding effort in the reseller community, your daily operations are not affected by this announcement. For now, the important things to remember are:

  • Your software is still supported – it is not “going away”
  • Sage is still committed to delivering superior products and customer service
  • CBSNW will continue to provide the same level of service you have come to expect
  • You don’t need to take any action related to this name change

Feel free to contact us if you have any questions about the product rebranding or any communications you receive from directly from Sage.

For those of you who are interested, this brief video from Sage describes the brand name evolution:

5 Questions To Ask Before Buying Contractor Payroll Software

contractor payroll software1. Does the system include an integrated Job Costing module? Your construction accounting software should allow you to assign your labor and employer burden (FICA, FUTA, SUTA, workers’ compensation, etc.) costs to your jobs. You should also be able to easily allocate overhead –(i.e. health insurance you provide, vacation time, etc.) to your jobs. 2. Can the system handle different jobs in different localities? – Do you have employees who work on a number of jobs in different states and localities? Make sure your new system will be able to handle the necessary trade classifications, pay rates, rates and deductions from a single timecard. Also, make sure you will have the ability to assign an employee’s time to multiple jobs and phases as needed.

3. Do I need Certified Payroll Reports? - The inability to produce certified payroll reports, is one of the main reasons we see contractors moving from a generic accounting solution to a contractor specific accounting package. Not being able to produce the required reports can prevent you from competing for government funded projects. There are many things to consider when selecting a system that supports certified payroll – feel free to give us a call with any questions you may have.

4. Is Direct deposit supported? Direct deposit is a “must have” feature these days; however, not all contractor payroll software packages have this feature built in. Be sure to ask is your system supports Automated Clearing House (ACH) direct deposit capabilities and whether or not this is an add-on module requiring extra cost to purchase, configure, and support.

5. How does the system handle Direct vs. Indirect Payroll Costs? – Most construction companies have employee who not only work at the job site(s), but also spend part of their day in the office. Make sure your accounting construction payroll system can handle recording payroll related direct costs, indirect costs (i.e. shop time) and office labor costs without having to implement “system workarounds”.

Selecting the right construction payroll accounting system may seem like a daunting task but it is important to do your homework. If you have any questions or need help defining the requirements for your business, feel free to give us a call at (800) 209 – 6927.

Job Costing Software - What To Look For

Today’s successful home builder knows that job costing (and controlling costs) is the key to making money in the construction business. Yes, estimating is also important, but an accurate estimate is only the first step towards bigger profits. You need to know how your actual costs compare to the estimate all the way through construction.

Whether you are researching your first accounting software solution or looking to upgrade the system you have, here are some things to consider before you buy your next system.

Take An Integrated Approach In order for the job costing module to track the labor, materials and overhead costs associated with a project, it must receive data about your accounts payable, payroll, inventory, and equipment. For this reason, it is important to have a job costing module that is fully integrated with your accounting software. Without an integrated job cost module, your staff will have duplicate data entry work, the system will be prone to errors, and you will have a difficult time getting the information you need in a timely manner.

And if change orders and purchase orders are not integrated into the accounting software, you will lose control and lose money.

Getting The Information You Need To Make Business Decisions When evaluating accounting software for job costing capabilities, pay attention to the type and variety of reports that are available. The ability to create reports and queries that will give you the answers to your business  questions in a timely fashion is key to increasing your profitability. At a minimum, you should be able to quickly access reports that show you:

  • initial and revised budgets by cost code
  • actual costs to date
  • committed costs
  • expected costs to complete the project
  • billings and cash collected to date

Don’t Forget The People Like any system, the information you get out of your accounting software is only as good as what you put into it. In order to capture the necessary details it is important your people in field as well as your people in the office can easily capture costs and get access to the reports they need to do their jobs.

Contractor Business Solutions Northwest Wins President’s Club Honor

CBSNW was recently named to the Sage North America President’s Circle. We would like to thank all of our customers for helping us achieve this award. More details about the award can be found in the press release copied below.

Contractor Business Solutions Northwest Wins President’s Club Honor

Contractor Business Solutions Northwest, a Sage business partner specializing in the sale, installation, and support of construction management software, has been named to the Sage North America President’s Circle for the 2011 business year.
PRLog (Press Release) - Nov 03, 2011 -
Contractor Business Solutions Northwest (CBSNW), a Sage North America business partner specializing in the sales, installation, and support of construction management softwareincluding Sage Master Builder, Sage Timberline Office, and Sage Timberline Estimating, has been named to the Sage North America President’s Circle for the 2011 business year.President’s Circle award winners are the top performing business partners for Sage Business Solutions (SBS) products. Sage recognizes CBSNW and all President’s Circle winners for their outstanding contributions in 2011. The Sage North America President’s Circle is awarded to the leading performers among SBS business partners representing a host of segment-leading brands, including the Sage Master Builder and Sage Timberline brands.
“I am incredibly proud of my team for achieving this accomplishment,” said Jon Newsom, partner at CBSNW. “Our customers in the construction industry have faced challenging economic conditions recently, and I am pleased that we have been able to work and achieve success together. I want to thank all of our customers and consultants for helping us achieve the President's Circle.”

# # #

About CBSNW Over the last two decades, Contractor Business Solutions Northwest (CBSNW) has helped contractors become more efficient and successful by providing complete solutions for their business needs. Headquartered in Seattle, CBSNW serves contractors in Washington, Oregon, Idaho, Montana, Alaska, Hawaii, and Canada. For more information, please visit or call 800.209.6927
Visit us at the Master Builders Association in September

Attention members of the Master Builders Association of King and Snohomish Counties: the Fall General Membership Dinner & Tradeshow is Thursday, September 15th, 2011 at the Hilton in Bellevue, and both Gerry Byrnes and Jon Newsom of CBSNW will be there just waiting to talk to you! If you are interested in construction accounting software, project management or estimating, or would like

to discuss how Sage Master Builder, or Sage Timberline could help your company, this is a great time to ask your questions. If you can't make it to this event, feel free to contact us at Contractor Business Solutions NW for more information.


UncategorizedJon NewsomComment
You're Invited to a FREE Webinar

What if you could do your Sage Master Builder reporting, data analysis, comparisons and more without leaving Excel? What if up-to-the-minute projected profit or WIP data was just a mouse click away?

What if project managers could quickly see the current job status numbers, enter the estimated cost to complete on the same template and, with one click, send it all back to your office?

What if you could see last year’s numbers and current numbers in the same report?

You can. Attend our 40 minute, complimentary webinar today and learn how you can use Liberty Reports to run reports directly inside of Excel, apply your knowledge of Excel to interact with your data, and extend the functionality of reports through Excel features.

2 PM PST, August 24th Click here to register now.

Sage Master Builder Version 17 Training

Sage Master Builder Version 17 is on its way and you should be receiving it in the next week! This upgrade includes enhancements and new features to take reporting, business analysis and service management to the next level. You'll gain easier access to information you need to make better decisions, make administrative and accounting tasks more efficient and less risky, and improve your bottom line! Join us for a live webinar to learn about:

  • NEW Alerts Manager – Automatically receive important alerts about critical information via email, dashboard, or both, such as when a job goes over budget or a change order is still pending
  • Dashboard Enhancements – Customizable by user with preset panels and ability to view Alerts
  • NEW Human Resources Forms – Over 70 customizable forms to handle a variety of common HR tasks
  • NEW Department of Labor WH-347 Certified Payroll Report
  • Service Dispatch Board Enhancements – Multi-day views, dispatch board personalization, and work order emailing
  • NEW Year-end Close Wizard – Step-by-step wizard to guide you through the process
  • Improved Company List Window – Ability to view active companies versus archive companies And Much More!

This is NOT just a review of the new version; we will be providing in-depth training on all of the new features and enhancements so that you’ll be able to use them immediately in your company.

Cost: $75; $125 for multiple employees from same company (each attendee will need to complete a registration form). After registering, you will be redirected to a payment page.

You have four opportunities to choose from for this training. Space is limited, so register today!

NOTE; Times below are listed in PACIFIC DAYLIGHT TIME.

Select “Show Time in My Time Zone” under the registration link for presentation time in your area.

Questions? Please contact

Contractor Business Solutions NW – (800) 209-6927, Ext. 5

Wright Office Solutions – (734) 591-9313

We look forward to “seeing” you at the webinar!

Register for a session now by clicking a date below:

Fri, Aug 19, 2011 11:00 AM - 1:30 PM PDT Wed, Sep 7, 2011 10:00 AM - 12:30 PM PDT

Once registered you will receive an email confirming your registration with information you need to join the Webinar.

Click here to download a brochure.


NEW - Sage Master Builder 17

Sage Master Builder Version 17The latest version focuses on three key areas, including: improving service operations, enhancing decision-making and streamlining administrative tasks.

The newly enhanced multi-day Dispatch Board enables more effective and efficient management and communication with field technicians. Incoming calls, work orders and bills can all be accessed from a central location and can be personalized for a company’s specific needs and processes.

Customizable User Dashboards provide the specific business metrics owners need for a holistic view of their company’s operations, while new Custom Alerts keep them on top of key business milestones and events. The new Year-End Wizard guides users through easier year-end closing, and more than 70 built-in human resources forms save construction businesses time and help reduce their liability.

“Sage Master Builder gives smaller construction companies a way to manage their businesses in a more productive way without having to invest in a larger, higher priced and more complex software suite,” said Jon Witty, general manager of Sage Construction and Real Estate. “With Version 17, Sage Master Builder includes new"mailt enhancements that companies need to take service management, reporting, and business analysis to the next level.”

Sage Master Builder integrates estimating, production, scheduling, accounting, service management and analysis in one convenient and easy-to-access system. For construction companies and service/specialty contractors outgrowing off-the-shelf accounting software, it is

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the ideal solution to get the information they need, when they need it and in the right format.